College tips 101

School is now in session for all of our Lincoln Parish students – parish schools, Grambling State and Louisiana Tech are in class, and it’s an exciting time for our community. 

I teach at Louisiana Tech – I’ve been here over a decade, and I am so happy to see familiar and new faces on campus. I know many of our new students – and likely their parents – are excited and probably a little anxious, so I wanted to share some quick tips for making this fall quarter successful. 

  1. Go see your professors. 

Believe it or not, your professors want to see you. I have students stop by my office all the time, whether to talk about course material or to ask for a recommendation letter or to talk about the news. Even if they just stopped by to say hello, that means something to your professors. It shows that you care not only about getting a grade, but you care about your education as well. 

2. Make friends in your major. 

I am all about diversity of friendships, and if you’re in a sorority, fraternity, athletics or any other campus organization, you may feel like you have enough friendships – but make friends with the people in your classes. These individuals can be your study partners, your groupmates, and even future spouses (my husband and I were both journalism majors). Being connected with your people in your major will only assist in your educational pursuits. 

3. Go to advising. 

Let me go ahead and tell you so you can put it on your calendar, Tech students, advising starts Oct. 24. Go see your adviser during advising week. GSU students, do the same. I cannot stress how important it is to get advised early. If you wait, your adviser may not be able to see you as early as you want, and you may not get into the classes you picked out. Oh, yes, and that’s another helpful tip: get a copy of your curriculum sheet and keep up with the classes you’ve taken and the ones you need to take. This will help you tremendously. Your adviser keeps up with it, but your adviser also probably keeps up with three or four dozen other advisees. Be responsible and keep up with your own curriculum sheet. 

4. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. 

College is hard. Heck, life is hard. Don’t be afraid when you need help, whether it be socially, economically, or academically. There are places on campus to help you out – financial aid, group counseling, the Lambright. If you’re struggling in a class – see No. 1. Go talk with a professor. Go to a resource center and get assistance. Too many avenues of help exist on campus for you to struggle on your own. 

5. Stay in touch with your parents. 

I know, college is a lot of fun. And your parents want to know about it. If you’re a firstborn heading to college, they probably are as nervous as can be. Give them text updates, picture updates, call them. I still call my mom nearly every day on my way to work. It’s important to stay connected to your family if you can. You will be busy, yes, but make it a priority to stay in touch with your family. 

There’s so much more I could say, but I will stop now. Fall quarter is one of my favorite quarters because there’s an excitement in the air of new possibilities for the year. Try something new, explore a new avenue, make a new friend. Make this your best fall yet. 

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